Tahoe Area Winter Fly Fishing Report 2018


Tahoe Fly Fishing winter fishing report:

By Rob Baldwin of Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters

The Fly Fishing Report for the Tahoe Region this winter has been quite different from last year at this point.  The rivers aren’t sacked in with snow. Frigid temperatures aren’t turning the fish into ice blocks, and snow hasn’t affected parking access to the rivers. Trying to get a trout to eat feathers on a hook has been a nice alternative to the crowded limited runs at the local ski resorts.  We hope that we get some snow pack soon to keep the water temps down and rivers full this summer.

Simply put, some days have been more productive than others.  As expected, this winter, the spring type days have the fish and bugs more willing to cooperate. Check water temps and fish the warmest part of the day.

The Truckee river has had some unsteady flows with the rain/snow and releasing of reservoirs, but has fished well on most days.  Watch the flows on the East Carson as well but it has been more consistent than others, and the fishing has been better than I remember in previous years. Do be careful when wading around the frozen edges on the Carson. The East Walker has been fishing better than previous years with flows a little  higher there is more holding water for the fish, and we’ve seen a resurgence of a 10-12″ class of rainbows and browns. Overall we have seen BWO’s, midges, and some streamer patterns bring productivity.

Typical of winter time, the fish have moved into slower water with the cold water bringing them plenty of oxygen.  I’ve found that tightline nymphing with a stealthy approach has helped register subtle takes but the indicator rig is always a go to when the fish are in the deeper pools more than a rod length away.  Don’t forget to pinch the barbs and keep em wet for the future of our fisheries.

Contact us at (530)541-8208 to book a guide and learn more about winter time techniques for trout in the Sierras of California and Nevada.

Tahoe Truckee Area Fly Fishing Guide School 2018 dates announced!!

Truckee Tahoe Area Fly Fishing Guide School 2018.

We’re excited to announce that we will be holding our 8th annual Tahoe/Truckee Area Guide School from April 30th- May 5th, 2018!  Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters and Matt Heron Fly Fishing will be hosting the fly fishing guide school .  Back again this year are top notch instructors: Matt Heron, Jordan Romney, Steve Johnson, Jay Swartley and more.

We will be covering everything from casting, instructing others, risk management, marketing, opportunities locally and beyond, entomology, a day rowing drift boats/rafts, and much more!  Rick McGuire designed this School to teach all methods of guiding, particularly Walk/Wade Guiding.  See our Sample Itinerary for further details at tahoeflyfishing.com.

Added days to our Guide School.

Our guide school will be 6 consecutive days of instruction/education spent mostly on the water. We have added 2 days of shadowing a guide from our school or guide from Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters.  This is an 8 day Fly Fishing Guide School course with our finishing school being the 2 shadow days later in our guide season.  This years Fly Fishing Guide School is $1600.00.

Please call Rob Baldwin at (276)525-5631 or email rob@tahoeflyfishing.com

Panning for gold.

It’s about that time folks, days are getting shorter and nights are getting cooler. We should be looking at about 6-8 weeks of great fishing. The early early bite is about done and we are happy to sleep in a bit. With cooler temps the rest of the week water temps should not be an issue going forward. The touch of fall in the air also has our big Browns starting to move a bit more. Don’t expect quantity but if you put your time in you should find some quality out there.
We have had some great days hiking the canyon on the Truckee lately, but also some slow days as well after all she is the Truckee. The next few weeks is a great time to throw the crayfish in the fast stuff, or even just take the streamer rod and commit to that one or two big whacks. If you are unfamiliar with these techniques it’s an excellent time to come fish with a guide and get dialed in (I bet you are not fishing enough weight!).
We have also had some great days on the Carson the last few weeks as well and it should only get better. We tend to have our best dry fly action this time of year. Water is low tho and stealth is key! I will be down there a few days this next week and will try to update good or bad…..wait actually a any day on the water is a good day! I’ll try to update on the catching then. See you on the water-Jay.

It goes zero to a hundred real quick

As always, but especially during springtime things can go from zero to a hundred in the blink of an eye. One minute the water appears lifeless and the next it seems every fish in the river is up. A little persistence can go a long way tho. If you don’t let it discourage you and you stick it out most spring days it will turn on for you….eventually.
We are all getting excited for summer now and with that being said we are starting to think beyond just our go to Truckee and Little Truckee. With the Carsons still a swollen and the high country still snowed in its a great time for some stillwater. Spring is a good time for hog hunting and it doesn’t get much better than our own Sawmill Lake at Northstar! Rite now there is a little walking involved on account of snow and mud on the road but if you are willing to walk it is well worth the effort! Give the shop a call to book the lake or with questions. -See ya on the water!

It’s go time!

Well it is go time folks, the California general trout season opens tomorrow! With that being said you know we are excited. Sure we have plenty of water that is open year round, but our options are now almost endless! With the promise of water all summer and near perfect flows for the opener things should kick off with a bang.
We took a drive out to the Carson Rivers today and man are flows about perfect. A little bit of off color on the East and just a bit into the grass on the west. A bit of color never hurts, I think sometimes it actually helps. You can get rite up on your fish without spooking them, and the higher flows push fish out of the main current and into the side seams.
If you are in north lake tonight make sure you stop by Blue Coyote in Truckee for Trout Unlimited’s “Fishmas eve” celebration. It’s a great cause with a bunch of great dudes! Also if you get out on the water this weekend feel free to stop by the shop and let us know how you did!

It won’t be long now.

No, it won’t be long now. It won’t be long and we will be spending our long summer days chasing trout in our favorite areas again. Soon we will be time to head back into the cold clear mountain streams of summer. Guard socks and wet wading, 3 weights and dry flys. Evening hatches that keep you on the water until well after dark. It will all be here before you know it!
Now is the time to stop procrastinating and start planning! Start looking at the calendar, call those fishing buddies and get those summer trips planed out. With more storms dumping lots of that white stuff on the mountains we are looking forward to our best summer in years! Call or email the shop with any questions, just remember it won’t be long now…..

Fall colors

Its a great time to come and enjoy the fall colors up here (not just on the trees). With our great weather, and cooling water temps we are looking at some of the best fishing of the year. Most area waters are fishing well, some better than others tho! Stop by the shop for the latest update, or better yet book a trip to learn the nuances fall fishing.

Fly Fishing the Sierras- East and West Carson Rivers


The good news is here up high in the mountains.  Summer is on her way out and fall is quickly on her way in.  If watching those beautiful aspens shed their fiery leaves while kicking drifts down soft seams is your thing, well now is the time!  We had our first frost of the morning yesterday with temps kicking back up into the mid to high 70s in the afternoon….perfect weather!  The water temps have also dropped drastically in our area with these cool nights and mild day time temperatures.  The fish are eager and willing as long as your able to come spend the time in to trick these feisty trout.  We have the October caddis hatch popping off any time now.  And soon after that comes the snow….well so we hope.  Fingers crossed.  So if you would like to get out one last time before that white stuff hits the ground feel free to drop on in the shop or shoot us a ring.  We at Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters would love to show you guys and gals around in our backyard.

East Carson Guided Trip Report for September 23rd 2014

IMG_1172-2Well its that time again folks, leaves are changing, nights are cooler, and the browns are getting fired up! Yes we do have smoke depending on wind direction, and yes the water is still low. If you watch the wind directions and get on it early though some of the best fishing of the year is rite now!

Low water, spooky fish and mud/silt on the bottom means bring the A-game. Try not to cross in slow moving water, think light long tippets and small fall bugs. Expect the occasional Streamer eater also tho! I have heard a lot of grumbling over the flows out there, but would argue that with adjusted tactics the fishing can be even better this year if you know where to look and how to approach it. What better time to set up a trip to learn low water tactics or just brush up on overall techniques? Go get “em!

Fishing Report for The East Carson River and West Carson River, The Truckee River and Little Truckee River, East Walker River and West Walker River, and many Tahoe area still waters. Updated July 31st, 2011

Fishing Report for the West and East Walker Rivers, West and East Carson Rivers, The Truckee River and Little Truckee River, and many Tahoe area still waters. Updated July 31st, 2011

We offer guided fly fishing year round on the Carson, Truckee and Walker Rivers.  Caples, Red Lake, Spooner Lake, Indian Creek Reservoir and Boca Reservoir as well.

East Carson River Fishing Report – Currently flowing at 700+ cfs.

Above Hangman’s Bridge – The flows are really coming down and the clarity is improving with about 2 + feet of visibility.  Streamer Fishing and Big Nymphs for a while longer with access still being difficult.  So close but looking for the magical 600 CFS for safe wading and clearer conditions.   Fish eddies and the edges for good results but look forward to some great fishing within a week or so!  Rafting is great!

Catch and Release section below Hangman’s Bridge: Definitely fishable but crossing is not exactly safe unless you are an experienced wader with a wading staff.    Full sinking lines with big streamers in the deep holes will take a few fish!  Big Streamers fished deep in the longer holes or Big Stones along the edges.  Caddis should start any day as well as the Bigger Mayflies and Yellow Sallies.

West Carson River Fishing Report – Currently flows are at 150+ cfs.

The West Carson has been stocked. The flows are in good shape and we have started guiding on it over the past few days.  Some dry fly fishing in the evenings but mostly Nymphing in the mornings and through out the day.  Nymphing has been the way to go with Stonefly’s and large attractor patterns. Yellow Sallies, PMD’s and Gray Drakes.  Nymphs- Fox’s Poopah tan 12-16, Stonefly’s size 8-10, Mayfly’s black and olive 10-16, Pheasant Tails 12-16. Streamers-Buggers in olive, white and black, Wool-Head Sculpins, Crystal Buggers, Meat Whistle olive and black.  The pocket water in the canyon is getting better and the upper sections have been good as well.  The meadow has been hammered and needs a bit of a rest…      

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).  We have been waiting patiently and the fish are starting to cooperate!                                               

West Walker River Fishing Report– Currently flows are at 1000+ cfs.

Flows are still high but coming down.  Should be great fishing within a week or so with good hatches.  Look for flows to be less than 800 cfs for better opportunities.  Streamers and Big Nymphs if you have to.  The higher sections should be good this week up by the base or even higher.

East Walker River Fishing Report– Flows are 350+ cfs.

The River is in great shape and fishing well!  The flows are perfect for summer fishing and the temperatures are staying fishable until the early afternoon.  As usual, try to quit fishing when the temps hit the upper 60’s.  A Thermometer is a must if you want to protect the fish!  They will still eat above 70 degrees of water temperature but the stress level will kill them.  Small flies are still working the best in the upper sections but as you make your way into Nevada the bugs are getting bigger.  Streamer fishing is tops if you want the chance to get a Bigger fish.  Caddis, Yellow Sallies, Golden Stones and Midges as well as San Juan Worms, Prince Nymphs, Larger Hares Ears for the basics.  Big, Dry and Orange will work on the surface with a dropper!

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).  Our guided trips on the Walker have been top notch with a mixture of Dries and Nymphs.  Well worth a trip if you have been waiting!

Little Truckee River Fishing Report– Flows are 400+ cfs.

Flows are great for summer fishing!  Look for small Stoneflies, Drakes, PMDs and Small Midge Patterns working well this time of year.  Streamer fishing is worth a shot at these flows! Nymphs- Rainbow Warriors in Black and Red sizes 18-20, WD-40′s grey and olive 18-22, Barr’s Emergers 18-20, Wier’s Sprinkle’s 18-20 and don’t forget the San Juan Worm in Tan or Red. Dries- Try Para Adams 18-22, Black Cripples, Beetles, Ants and PMD’s in the Orangey color pallet.  Spinners in the evenings!  Streamers- Olive and Tan Cone-Head Sculpins, Olive and White Buggers, Natural and Pearl Zonkers. 

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).  Most trips are mixed with fishing on the Truckee part of the day!  Drift boat fishing at the inlet on Boca has been great with numbers of fish!

Truckee River (Ca) Fishing Report– Flows on the Truckee are below 200 cfs near the town of Truckee, 800+ cfs below Boca Bridge.

Prime conditions for the Truckee right now!  Fish are eating dries as well as Nymphs.  A morning fishery for the most part with the mid-days slowing until evening.  Caddis, Caddis and more Caddis with a few Drakes still hanging around.  PMD’s, Golden Stones and Yellow Sallies as well.  San Juan Worms, Prince Nymphs and Streamers for the Basics.

Truckee River (Nv) Fishing Report– Flows on the Truckee in Nevada are 700+ cfs

No longer blown out but difficult to fish.  Maybe a couple more weeks to great fishing in Nevada.  If you are a die hard Nevada fan, get on it now for limited success.  Look for flows to get in the 500 cfs range for top conditions.  Some of the guides love this flow level!

Tahoe area Still waters:
Indian Creek Reservoir – Fishing is on! Water Levels are way up, they have stocked big bows and they are on the prowl! Try brown buggers, Damsels and Aggravator Princes with a slow strip. Blood Midges and Calibaetis nymphs under the indicator have been working as well.  Occasional hatch of Calibaetis and the fish get on them for a short period! The weeds are back and float tubing tends to give the best access!

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).   

 Pyramid Lake- Closed for the season, can’t wait until next year!

Caples Lake Fishing Report– The Lake is fishing good around Woods Creek as well as the Dam area and the Spillway.  Fish will shut down around 10 am so get out there early!  Buggers, Streamers, Damsel Nymphs, Calibaetis Nymphs and Hares Ear Nymphs.  Look for fish cruising the shoreline.  Boat rentals at Caples Lake Resort make for a great adventure and better access to the back bays. (209) 258-8888

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).

Red Lake Fishing Report– It is fishing well! San Juan Worms and a Hares Ear Nymph under an indicator work great in the upper part of the lake.  Otherwise Streamers, Buggers, Leeches, Damsels and Aggravators on a sinking line and it fishes best from a float tube.  Shore fishing is OK…  Evenings can produce some fun action on the surface after the wind dies out!

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).

Spooner Lake Fishing Report– Fishing well from float tubes with numerous fish being caught on Leech Patterns, Damsels and Calibaetis.  The weeds are here again which makes for a tough shore fishery.  Tiger Trout up to 17 inches and bigger are the attraction to this still water as well as Rainbows and Cutthroat!  This will start to slow as the temperatures rise!  Big Browns, on a rare occasion, have been caught.

Guides Available call (530-541-8208).  Great float tube guided trip.  Good numbers of fish!

Marlette Lake Fishing Report– Just opened and have not received any reports as of yet.  Should fish great and worth the hike!

Blue Lakes Fishing Report– Road opened recently!

No reports as of yet but the fishing should be good due to little pressure so far this season.  The stocking trucks should have been there to help out the numbers!

Silver Lake fishing report– Same bugs as Caples and Red Lake…  Fish the area on the south end of the lake where the creek comes in.  Ants are still around!

We have offered guiding on most of these waters for over 15 years. The shop is fully stocked with all the latest equipment and flies needed to fish the Eastern Sierra and more. Call 530-541-8208 or stop by the shop for more info. We will be updating our fishing report often so check www.tahoeflyfishing.com/blog for the most up to date info on fly fishing the Tahoe Region.